Rugby

Toulon Owner Has An Intriguing Idea For The Future Of European Rugby

Toulon Owner Has An Intriguing Idea For The Future Of European Rugby

Mourad Boudjellal has a plan to revamp European rugby. As a man never afraid to voice his opinion - he once said he'd make Quade Cooper more indebted than Greece if the Australian reneged on his pre-contract agreement with Toulon - Boudjellal went to Canal+ to explain his idea.

The Toulon owner wants to scrap the European Cup - a competition his side has won on the last three occasions. In its place, Boudjellal wants what sounds like a European Super League. It would be formatted as two pools of ten.

In terms of the numbers involved from each nation, it would not differ greatly from the current competiton. There would be six each from French and English rugby. Of the remaining eight, he did not specify. Presumably they would consist of the Celtic nations.

His idea would also mean alternations to the Top 14. French rugby's top tier would be reduced to 12 teams and there would be relegation between it and the new European competition.

It would also mean an overall reduction in the number of games played by teams. Given the attrional nature of the sport and the increasing prevalence of concussion, this format could certainly be viewed as positive in that respect.

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There's also some added gravy to Boudjellal's new tournament, something which he had banged the drum for on numerous occasions previously. The top four teams in the league would go on to play the top four in Super Rugby at a Club World Cup.

Given the disparity between northern and southern hemisphere teams in international rugby, it would be interesting to see how it plays out at club level.

[L'Equipe]

Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE

PJ Browne
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